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SubjectRe: [PATCH v2] mm: memcg/slab: fix percpu slab vmstats flushing
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On Fri, Dec 20, 2019 at 10:31:32AM +0100, Michal Hocko wrote:
> On Thu 19-12-19 20:27:28, Roman Gushchin wrote:
> > Currently slab percpu vmstats are flushed twice: during the memcg
> > offlining and just before freeing the memcg structure. Each time
> > percpu counters are summed, added to the atomic counterparts and
> > propagated up by the cgroup tree.
> >
> > The second flushing is required due to how recursive vmstats are
> > implemented: counters are batched in percpu variables on a local
> > level, and once a percpu value is crossing some predefined threshold,
> > it spills over to atomic values on the local and each ascendant
> > levels. It means that without flushing some numbers cached in percpu
> > variables will be dropped on floor each time a cgroup is destroyed.
> > And with uptime the error on upper levels might become noticeable.
> >
> > The first flushing aims to make counters on ancestor levels more
> > precise. Dying cgroups may resume in the dying state for a long time.
> > After kmem_cache reparenting which is performed during the offlining
> > slab counters of the dying cgroup don't have any chances to be
> > updated, because any slab operations will be performed on the parent
> > level. It means that the inaccuracy caused by percpu batching
> > will not decrease up to the final destruction of the cgroup.
> > By the original idea flushing slab counters during the offlining
> > should minimize the visible inaccuracy of slab counters on the parent
> > level.
> >
> > The problem is that percpu counters are not zeroed after the first
> > flushing. So every cached percpu value is summed twice. It creates
> > a small error (up to 32 pages per cpu, but usually less) which
> > accumulates on parent cgroup level. After creating and destroying
> > of thousands of child cgroups, slab counter on parent level can
> > be way off the real value.
> >
> > For now, let's just stop flushing slab counters on memcg offlining.
> > It can't be done correctly without scheduling a work on each cpu:
> > reading and zeroing it during css offlining can race with an
> > asynchronous update, which doesn't expect values to be changed
> > underneath.
> >
> > With this change, slab counters on parent level will become eventually
> > consistent. Once all dying children are gone, values are correct.
> > And if not, the error is capped by 32 * NR_CPUS pages per dying
> > cgroup.
> >
> > It's not perfect, as slab are reparented, so any updates after
> > the reparenting will happen on the parent level. It means that
> > if a slab page was allocated, a counter on child level was bumped,
> > then the page was reparented and freed, the annihilation of positive
> > and negative counter values will not happen until the child cgroup is
> > released. It makes slab counters different from others, and it might
> > want us to implement flushing in a correct form again.
> > But it's also a question of performance: scheduling a work on each
> > cpu isn't free, and it's an open question if the benefit of having
> > more accurate counters is worth it.
> >
> > We might also consider flushing all counters on offlining, not only
> > slab counters.
> >
> > So let's fix the main problem now: make the slab counters eventually
> > consistent, so at least the error won't grow with uptime (or more
> > precisely the number of created and destroyed cgroups). And think
> > about the accuracy of counters separately.
>
> So this is essentially a revert, right? I have to say I was not a great
> fan of bee07b33db78 in the first place.

I have to admit, you were right!

>
> > v2: added a note to the changelog, asked by Johannes. Thanks!
> >
> > Signed-off-by: Roman Gushchin <guro@fb.com>
> > Fixes: bee07b33db78 ("mm: memcontrol: flush percpu slab vmstats on kmem offlining")
> > Cc: stable@vger.kernel.org
> > Acked-by: Johannes Weiner <hannes@cmpxchg.org>
>
> Acked-by: Michal Hocko <mhocko@suse.com>

Thanks!

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